A MAN committed a sneak break-in at the home of a friend then tried to persuade him not to pursue a burglary conviction.

Carl Damien Robinson at first offered the now former friend money to have the charge dropped, but then became more threatening when his bribe was refused.

Appearing at Durham Crown Court via video link from the city’s nearby prison, Robinson admitted burglary and doing an act intended to pervert the course of justice.

The court heard it put Robinson, 27, of North Street, Ferryhill, in breach of three court orders, including a six-month suspended prison sentence for attempted robbery.

Connor Quinn, prosecuting, said Robinson knocked at the door of his friend’s home, in Davy Street, Ferryhill, at 4.30pm, on October 26, asking to borrow £10.

His friend agreed and made his way round from the back of the property to the front, to hand over the money.

On reaching the front, Robinson was not there, but he thought little of it and went to a nearby shop to buy some milk.

But, on his return, he noticed the living room window was open and £60 was missing from the mantelpiece.

Fingerprints found on the window gave a match with Robinson, who was arrested and interviewed on December 3.

He claimed he climbed into the house via the window to check on the welfare of his friend, denying stealing anything.

But he was charged with burglary and bailed, on condition that he made no contact with the victim.

Mr Quinn said despite that, Robinson met him three times on Dean Bank, offering money not to pursue the charge, but he refused.

Robinson became agitated saying he could get him £200.

Mr Quinn said the approach was reported to police, but, their paths crossed again on January 9, when Robinson told his one-time friend: “See what’s going to happen to you when I catch up with you properly.”

Ismael Uddin, mitigating, said: “They’ve been friends for numerous years and would visit and borrow money from each other.”

Mr Uddin said the later meeting was, “unplanned”.

Judge Ray Singh told Robinson it was, “an intrusion at the home of somebody you regarded as a friend and he regarded you as a friend.”

Describing it as a, “particularly mean offence”, Judge Singh imposed a 15-month prison sentence and made Robinson subject of a restraining order, forbidding him contacting or approaching the victim for ten years.